Durlston Country Park National Nature Reserve

Durlston Country Park
baby changing facilities icon Food icon Parking icon Guided tours icon Shop icon Hearing disability facilities icon Visual disability facilities icon Wheelchair access icon

Durlston Country Park, National Nature Reserve and Castle, situated 1 mile from Swanage in Dorset, is a fabulous 280 acre countryside paradise, consisting of sea-cliffs, coastal limestone downland, haymeadows, hedgerows and woodland.

With stunning views, walking trails, the historic Great Globe, superb geology, fascinating wildlife there is always something different to see and do.

Durlston Castle features interactive exhibits for all the family about the wildlife and geology of Durlston and the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site, while the Fine Foundation Gallery, within the Castle, host an everchanging series of art, craft, scientific or historical exhibtions and a varied programme of performance and other events.

Venue Type:

Garden, parklands or rural site

Opening hours

10.00am - 4.00 (1st Nov - Easter Holidays)
10.00am - 5.00 (Easter Holidays - 31st October)

Admission charges

N/A.

Getting there

By car or bike: From Swanage, follow the brown tourist information signs.

On foot: From Swanage town centre, follow the South West Coast Path or Victorian Trail signs

Bike racks are located in the car park nearest Durlston Castle

Additional info

An offroad wheelchair and Tramper electric buggies are available for less mobile visitors - to book or for more information, please call 01929 424443, visit www.durlston.co.uk or email info@durlston.co.uk

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Fine Foundation Gallery

‘The Miracle of Migration: Exhibition’

  • 9 February — 1 March 2016

Discover the amazing journeys undertaken every year by birds, butterflies and moths, with this free exhibition.

In the Fine Foundation Gallery, Daily 11am-4pm

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Rena Gardiner

Exhibition: Rena Gardiner – artist and printmaker

  • 8 — 22 March 2016

Exhibition of the work of Dorset-based artist and printmaker, Rena Gardiner (1929 – 1999). Her principal achievement was 45 books, which she wrote, illustrated and printed, but her legacy also includes paintings, pastels and prints

Fine Foundation Gallery: Daily 11.am-4.00pm

Admission

Free of Charge

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/index.php?nid=141&id=4

Fine Foundation Gallery

‘Trapped Light': Exhibition of Contemporary Engraved Glass

  • 25 March — 12 April 2016

Enjoy an amazing variety of work by the South-west branch of the Guild of Glass Engravers, showcasing the possibilities of this beautiful art form. Work for sale


Daily 11.00am - 5.00pm

Fine Foundation Gallery Free

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Free of Charge

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Oxeye Meadow

Mindfulness Walk

  • 13 March 2016 From 10:30am

Join 'mindful nurse' Nikki Harman for a relaxing, meditative walk through the Durlston woodland and learn some simple mindfulness techniques

Meet at the Learning Centre

Admission

Booking Essential £5

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Durlston Castle

Castle Tour

  • 8 March 2016 10:30-11am
  • 22 March 2016 10:30-11am
  • 12 April 2016 10:30-11am
  • 26 April 2016 From 10:30am

A Free half hour tour of Durlston Castle.

Meet at the Castle

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Donations Welcome

Stargazing

Stargazing at Durlston

  • 13 February 2016 From 7:30pm
  • 12 March 2016 From 7:30pm
  • 7 April 2016 From 8:30pm
  • 15 April 2016 From 8:30pm

Join the Wessex Astronomical Society for a short talk and the chance to use telescopes to view the sky at night.

October: The Moon, Saturn, Galaxies, Star Clusters and the Autumn Constellations

November: The Leonid Meteor Showers, The Moon, Nebulae, Galaxies and the Winter Constellations

February: The Moon, Jupiter, Galaxies and the Winter Constellations

March: The Moon, Jupiter, The Orion Nebula and the Spring Constellations.

April: Jupiter, the Orion Nebula, Galaxies and the Spring Constellations

Meet at the Learning Centre.

Weather dependent - phone 01929 424443 on the day to confirm. £3.00 per person.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£3.00 per person.

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Bird

Monthly Bird Walks

  • 21 February 2016 From 10am
  • 20 March 2016 From 10am
  • 10 April 2016 From 10am

Guided walk to observe Durlston's Birds



Meet at the Castle.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£3

Durlston Castle

Go Wild at Durlston!

  • 17 February 2016 11am-3pm
  • 30 March 2016 11am-3pm
  • 6 April 2016 11am-3pm

Free drop-in activities.
Meet at Learning Centre.
Donations welcome.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Any age

Admission

Free but Donations welcome.

Aviary Glade

Easter Egg Trail

  • 25 January — 12 April 2016 *on now

Follow the clues around the Park to win a delicious prize!

Daily 11.00am-4.00pm

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Admission

£3

Barn Owl

Hawk and Owl Pellets

  • 18 February 2016 2-3:30pm

Kids Activity. Ever wondered what birds of prey eat, how we can tell and where to find the evidence?

Booking essential. £3

Meet at Durlston Castle

Suitable for

  • Especially for children

Admission

Booking Essential: £3

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Sunny Ormonde

An Evening With Sunny Ormonde: (Lillian Bellamy from 'The Archers') 

  • 26 February 2016 From 7:30pm

Sunny has played the outrageous "Lilian Bellamy” in Radio 4’s The Archers for 15 years and has become a favourite character! Sunny will fill you in on behind the scenes stories about the world's longest running soap - an evening of anecdotes, banter, and favourite pieces.
£12.50 . Booking recommended.

Fine Foundation Gallery.

Parking included on advance sales.

Admission

£12.50

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Tilly Whim

Quarry History Walk

  • 6 March 2016 From 2pm

Join quarryman, historian and Master Mason Trev Haysom, for a walk to find out more about the quarry history of Durlston.

Meet at the Castle

£3

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

£3

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Julian Sawyer

‘Purbeck Footprints' Wildlife Photography Walk

  • 27 March 2016 From 2:30pm

Join wildlife photographer Julian Sawyer to enjoy Durlston's autumn wildlife and 'develop' your photographic skills.

Meet at Learning Centre.

Booking essential.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£5.00

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/index.php?nid=141&id=4

‘Aren't Bees Brilliant!' : Family Event

  • 31 March 2016 From 2pm

Discover just how brilliant Bees are, with games and activities to discover more about our furry friends!

Booking essential.
£3.

Learning Centre

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£3.00 per person.

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Tilly Whim

Clifftop Tour

  • 31 March 2016 From 11am
  • From 26 April 2016

A half-hour stroll along the cliffs.

Donations welcome.

Meet at Durlston Castle

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Donations Welcome

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Fossil

Jurassic Time Travellers: Family Event

  • 1 April 2016 2-4pm

Meet a palaeontologist, have your fossil finds identified, uncover ancient animals that lived on our coast and take home your own painted casts of Jurassic fossils. Booking

Booking essential.

Meet at Learning Centre.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£3

Peter Rush

Art Workshop: Jurassic Creatures…

  • 2 April 2016 10am-4pm

Join artist and former 'Jackanory' illustrator Peter Rush, to create dinosaurs from plastic cutlery.

Booking essential. £15 children (or £25 both days),

£25 adults (or £40 both days).

Meet at the Learning Centre

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

£15 children (or £25 both days),
£25 adults (or £40 both days)

Peter Rush

Art Workshop: Wire and Paper Seabirds

  • 3 April 2016 10am-4pm

Join artist and former 'Jackanory' illustrator Peter Rush, to create seabirds from wire and paper.

Booking essential. £15 children (or £25 both days), £25 adults (or £40 both days).

Learning Centre.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£15 children (or £25 both days), £25 adults (or £40 both days).

Coastal Path

Family Orienteering

  • 7 April 2016 From 2pm

Family Event. Choose the best route to complete a course in the fastest time, as you learn to read orienteering maps, with a British Orienteering trained instructor.

Booking essential £5/£3/£15 family ticket.

Learning Centre.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£5 adult.
£3 child
£15 family

Peregrine at Durlston

Clifftop Tour

  • 7 April 2016 From 11am

A half-hour stroll along the cliffs.

Donations welcome. .

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

Donations welcome.

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/index.php?nid=8&id=4&evnt_id=1127

Fossil

Fossil Discovery Day

  • 9 April 2016 10am-4pm

See local fossils from our Jurassic coast. Uncover your very own fossils and get creative by painting your own plaster cast ammonite and making replicas of trilobites and dinosaur foot prints.

Donations welcome.

Learning Centre.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Donations welcome

Burn the Curtain

Angela Carter’s ‘The Company of Wolves’: Outdoor Theatre with ‘Burn the Curtain’

  • 21 — 23 April 2016

Angela Carter's classic tale adapted into a promenade adventure for runners and walkers.  A re-telling of this dark and mysterious modern classic.  Run or walk with us, the route will be 2-3 miles for walkers and 4 miles for runners.  The story will be performed along the way.
At the Learning Centre.

Advanced booking recommended

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Adult £12,
Under 18 £8,
Family £25 (2 adults, 2 children),
£10 adult tickets for groups of 4 or more

Website

http://www.durlston.co.uk/events.aspx

Ted Pratt

Early Spider Orchids and Other Spring Flowers

  • 24 April 2016 From 2:30pm

Join botanist Ted Pratt for a walk to enjoy some of Durlston's magnificent spring flowers

Meet at the Castle

£3

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly

Admission

£3.00.

Getting there

By car or bike: From Swanage, follow the brown tourist information signs.

On foot: From Swanage town centre, follow the South West Coast Path or Victorian Trail signs

Bike racks are located in the car park nearest Durlston Castle

Durlston Country Park National Nature Reserve
Durlston Country Park NNR
Lighthouse Road
Swanage
Dorset
BH19 2JL
England

Website

www.durlston.co.uk

E-mail

info@durlston.co.uk

Telephone

01929 424443

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
advertisement